[Interest] Qt free software policy

Roland Hughes roland at logikalsolutions.com
Fri Aug 23 14:42:24 CEST 2019

On 8/23/19 1:59 AM, Kai Köhne wrote:
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Interest <interest-bounces at qt-project.org> On Behalf Of Roland
>> Hughes
>> [...]
>> The way our "support" was explained to me by our boss was this (it might be
>> different for every negotiation):
>> "If we have trouble with installation of the development software,
>> configuration of the development environment or cross compiling for the
>> target system we can call and get help right away. If we find a bug we have to
>> file a bug report and get in the queue with everyone else."
> That's not true (unless "everyone else" means all people with the same support level). The people in Qt support will also try to directly provide you with a patch and/or workaround, if possible. Also the internal development teams in the Qt Company will prioritize bugs coming from commercial customers. That's why it's actually advised to file a bug through Qt Support, or at least inform Qt Support that you filed a bug in JIRA if you are a commercial customer.
Prioritize != Ride Bug to Extinction

At some point I expect "that guy again" to chime in here about the 
REGRESSION bugs he filed which have been rotting for years. Their bits 
may have turned to dust by now.

I always have trouble communicating this to people who have never worked 
with real computers. They have no concept of what real sev-level support 
is. They believe throwing bugs into JIRA and watching them age like 
Bourbon is "support." It can't even buy a ticket to watch real support 

My first IT job was a midnight computer operator at Airfone, Inc. They 
put credit card telephones in airplanes long before anyone had cell 
phones. They were dead broke from building all of the ground stations 
and installing the phones we had installed. Had even missed payroll so 
we were all working for free. The only bill which was religiously paid 
was our sev-level support contract with DEC.

It was about 11:30 at night when we had a major outage. I forget what it 
was. I called the systems analyst who had me boot/load the Colorado 
software on the system console. Then phone in to the Colorado voice 
support line.

I was on the phone with Colorado when I had to set the phone down to 
sign for someone with the security guard. The person I had to sign in 
was from DEC support. Colorado had dispatched them from a regional 
office once their diagnostics firmware identified the problem area from 
the OPCOM and AUDIT logs.

He stayed until some time after 4a.m. We were fully functional when he left.

I wasn't on-site for this one but worked with the individual who was. He 
used to love telling me this story.

When Oracle first introduced RAC it was an even bigger hand polished 
turd than QML. I know that is difficult to wrap one's mind around if 
you've been exposed to QML, but, there it is.

Oracle convinced a major downstate heavy equipment manufacturer to roll 
out a new critical system based on Oracle RAC on some flavor of *nix 
instead of basing it on the already proven RDB running on OpenVMS.

The only OS then or now which well and truly clusters is OpenVMS. 
Everything else claims whatever sad and pathetic thing they are capable 
of, clustering. It's as night and day different as real support and 
filing a JIRA ticket.

This system was production critical when it went online. The database 
was completely corrupted multiple times. I'm told Oracle had an entire 
team on-site for weeks, all as part of the support contract.

Big companies are willing to take big chances on unproven technologies 
when they can get sev-level support. "Filing a ticket" isn't sev-level 
support. When there is no written promise that however many bodies 
necessary will be allocated 100%, even on-site 100% when needed, all as 
part of the support contract, it isn't sev-level support.

Here's another one I was on-site for.

Payroll conversion project at Quaker Oats. They were kicking ADP to the 
curb and bringing payroll in-house with PeopleSoft. All of the mills and 
plants were still running Cyborg payroll. The feed from Cyborg had to 
create a different file for transmission to PeopleSoft at the corporate 
office. At the time Cyborg was 1970s style COBOL using the card format 
with line numbers and it was distributed in source. They also had their 
own "4GL" called Generator which was supposed to be platform independent 
but used COBOL underneath.

Someone, whom I can only assume is either the worst human being ever or 
the most unfortunate one, worked at one of the east coast pet food 
factories. The exact number escapes me. I can't remember if it was 25 or 
27 wage garnishments they had, just that it was north of 20 and one more 
than the Cyborg payroll system could handle. It crashed payroll. Factory 
workers tend to live paycheck to paycheck and nobody was getting paid 
until that bug was fixed.

Cyborg sent the head or one of the head/lead developers to our office. 
He patched the software with us sitting there. We compiled it, tested 
it, and payroll happened at the plant. The checks were about an hour 
late, if I recall correctly, but everyone got paid, even the person with 
20+ garnishments who caused the problem.

Sev-level support is a universe unto its own. Once you work in such an 
environment it becomes difficult to call what exists in the PC world 

Oh, for those who don't live in America or a country which allows wage 
garnishment, when you don't pay a debt you are legally obligated to pay, 
people/companies take you to court to collect and the court awards them 
a garnishment of your wages. There are different state and municipality 
laws about just how much a person has to be left, but everything above 
that amount goes into the garnishment pool and there is another set of 
rules as to how the pool is divided up when a person has more than one 
wage garnishment.

This last story stuck with me because the person would have had far more 
income if they quit work and went on welfare, but they still chose to 
show up for work every day knowing they could earn more just sitting at 

Roland Hughes, President
Logikal Solutions
(630)-205-1593  (cell)

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